It’s not easy to find definitive information regarding a minimum or maximum KDP word count for Kindle ebooks.
For many new self-publishing authors, finding related information on Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) Help can be challenging.
If you are looking for maximum file sizes or numbers of pages for print books, you have to dig very deep.
So, to save you some time and perhaps frustration, I’ve done some research that will hopefully provide you with all the answers you need.
Can a book be too short or long to publish on Amazon KDP?
Yes, there are limitations on the number of pages in a print book.
The minimum is 24 pages, and the maximum is 828.
However, for ebooks, the answer is not as clear-cut.
One aspect, though, is generally accepted. KDP word count for Kindle ebooks can be too short.
In 2013, Amazon KDP confirmed that it was removing titles of less than 2,500 words.
You won’t find this information in KDP help now. But it was documented in an email message to a self-publishing author.
The only reference to short ebooks now from KDP Help refers to disappointing content.
It’s like a lot of the guidelines on KDP Help. It’s sometimes hard to find definitive information.
Hopefully, this article will help you if you can’t find the information you are looking for.
So let’s look at each book format in more detail.
Print book limitations
The first limitation is your pdf file size.
While KDP gives no warning regarding the interior file size for a print book, it says this about book cover files.
File size. Cover files larger than 650MB won’t convert. We recommend a file size of 40MB or less because large files can slow down printing.
I can only assume that this file limit would also apply to an interior file if it contained a lot of images.
While there is no word count limit, KDP print books do have a restriction on the number of pages.
You can see from the table above that there is a minimum of 24 pages.
However, the maximum depends on the type of print book you choose. While the maximum is 828 pages, some formats are limited to 776 or 600 pages.
If you are trying to estimate word count in relation to pages, it’s not an easy calculation.
But you can estimate your KDP word count and pages by using this calculator.
For example, a book of 100,000 words using 13pt Times New Roman would be approximately 292 pages.
But the same book using Verdana 14pt would be 341 pages.
The KDP limits for print books are quite generous. For most authors, especially low content book publishers, you will have no problems.
Limitations for Kindle Ebooks
The information is not as clear for Kindle ebooks as for print books.
From memory, I had some idea about the limitations.
But it took me a while to research and dig around to find reliable and accurate data.
I had to resort to using the Wayback Machine to find a removed entry from KDP Help about the maximum ebook file size.
You can try this link to view the full page. But here is a screenshot if that fails.
It seems to confirm that the same 650Mb applies to ebooks. So it may be that this is the file size limit across all KDP publishing.
Further down this page, there is also this note.
KDP currently supports files of 650 megabytes or less and 8,000 pages or fewer. If you try to upload a file larger than this, it will not convert.
Amazon does not mention this limit to the number of pages in an ebook in its current help pages.
However, I recall that it did place a limit some time ago due to Kindle Unlimited (KU) scams.
I managed to find an old article on The Digital Reader that announced that KDP had placed a limit of 3,000 KENP pages.
It is also now noted in KDP Help:
Author earnings are then determined by their share of total pages read, up to a total of 3,000 pages per customer per title.
However, it doesn’t mean that KDP limits an ebook by page count.
It only means that an ebook of more than 3,000 pages will not earn Kindle Unlimited KENP royalties for any additional pages above this limit.
Restrictions to note for ebooks
As I mentioned earlier in this article, there is a minimum KDP word count of approximately 2,500 words.
Even though KDP doesn’t mention this number, it’s safe to say that it is a good guide.
It’s also a reasonable assumption that 8,000 pages represent the maximum. But who would publish a book that long?
The only definitive guide is that if you enroll your ebook in Kindle Unlimited, it should be less than 3,000 pages.
But if you don’t enroll in KU and only want to sell ebooks, there is no restriction on your KDP word count and pages.
Well, unless you get to 8,000 pages!
The only additional note worth mentioning is that your ebook file size can adversely affect your ebook royalty earnings.
If your ebook contains video embeds or a lot of large images, you could lose a lot of money in Kindle download charges.
As with all things Internet and online, things change.
Amazon KDP Help is no exception. Pages are constantly updated, moved, or removed.
But given the available information, some KDP limitations seem to have remained constant for some years now.
1. The maximum file size KDP can upload is 650Mb for print books and ebooks. It seems to be a system limitation.
2. Print books have a minimum of 24 pages and a maximum of 828.
3. The minimum word count for ebooks is 2,500. There is no maximum KDP word count limit on ebooks.
4. There is a 3,000-page limit for Kindle Unlimited ebooks.
You will have no issues if you are self-publishing a text-only novel between 40,000 and 120,000 words.
The only time you need to take care is when you publish a book with a lot of images.
One high-resolution image can often be as large as 4-10Mb or even more.
When you have a lot of images, it doesn’t take long for your file size to grow.
If you have images in a book or ebook, make sure you resize and optimize your images before publishing.
I remember reading a post on a support forum about one author trying to publish an ebook on Amazon that was 850Mb.
That is just way too big for any online system.
There’s one last note worth mentioning.
The limits I have mentioned in this article are also probably generally true for other online self-publishing platforms.
Related reading: When A Self-Published Author Dies What Happens To Their Books?